Since I have been conscious of what I’m eating – I’ve also been noticing what the people around me eat. A few days ago I had a true epiphany about my past relations with food. Ready? Not every day is my birthday. Not every day deserves “special” meals, and fancy dining. Sounds silly? Follow me here…
For YEARS I have eaten elaborate breakfasts, had lunch dates out of the office and then fantastic dinners (after all, I deserve it right?!). Oh, I’ve also wanted dessert nearly every.single.night. Of course I do deserve to feel special, but I need to find a healthy way to balance my desire for gourmet dining, and my calorie intake. Not every, single meal of my life needs to be 5 stars.
I noticed one of my close work girlfriends (we’ll call her Charlotte) brings her breakfast to work every day (cereal w/ skim milk) and has a healthy lunch also at her desk 9/10 times. Hmmm….SHE’S special, but yet she isn’t making pancakes or French Toast with bacon every day to treat herself. Is Charlotte a saint? Does she never enjoy anything “good”? Of course not, she’s human. She just so happens to save her splurges for weekends. During the week she goes to the gym regularly and she leads a healthy, active lifestyle – but balances that with having fun and enjoying cocktails/desserts on occasion. Novel concept eh?
Now, I have another very good work friend who I will call James. He is very athletic, has been as long as I’ve known him. He hits the gym or runs or attends a track meet 5-6 times a week. He also eats SUPER healthy (and pretty boring, if I do say so myself). Plain salad, brown rice, chicken….average, every day meals. Nothing fancy. Does he eat like this EVERY day? Nope, he does treat himself….but the treats are just that – an occasion, not a daily occurrence. Those words are so close (occasion…occurrence) but cover such a broad spectrum! I recently had lunch on a Sunday w/ he and his lovely wife (we’ll call her Mrs. James). The Mrs. is currently pregnant (and seriously adorable, just for the record). When I saw them she was CRAVING Coke -and ordered one. Just one. She didn’t need 3 refills, she didn’t need dessert after our meal. Wow. I drove home thinking she had amazing self-control…but now I’ve realize she was treating herself by having a Coke!
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gone to my favorite deli for a sandwich at lunch and picked up a cannoli…or a cupcake…or something yummy from their in house bakery. Just because I’m having a bad day…or even a good day doesn’t mean I deserve a treat with every meal! Food can no longer be a reward in my life. Not every day is my birthday. See, I told you I’d tie it in! 😉
It’s little things like this ephiphany that make me realize why I’ve been steadily gaining weight for so many years. Once you can check your perspective and see where you’re out of whack – suddenly the world is a clearer place. Knowing I can have treats in my life- but I need to eat healthy 90% of the time, and reserve splurges for just 10% of the time makes SO MUCH SENSE! That ratio will be key in my success going forward. In the past I had this *foolish* mentality of “ok…you diet now, lose weight then you can go back to the way you USED to eat”. No, no, no silly girl – if you do what you always did, you’ll get what you always got! (Duh!) I have to change routines, break bad habits and create new, healthy habits in order for this process to truly work.
I’ve decided this is a good time for my first poll (if you know me, you know I LOVE to poll). Thanks in advance for participating! 🙂